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[col. writ. 11/9/17] ©'17 Mumia Abu-Jamal
In the wake of a spate of scandals bursting out of Hollywood, names--names of the rich and famous-are dropping like ripe fruit from a bush.
This latest eruption stems from the growing claims against super-director/bank roller, Harvey Weinstein. (Truth be told, when I first heard his name, I had no idea who he was. I thought of a prominent gay actor with a raspy voice, and could make no sense of the reports).
Although known by many in Hollywood, he barely burst the bubble to the outer world.
But before long, a dam had burst, of famous women from the biggest blockbusters of the last few decades, saying the film executive sexually assaulted or harassed, well "#MeToo" (to quote the hash tag).
And it didn’t end with Weinstein; a who's who of male Hollywood were outed as sexual abusers--and then, miraculously, the river burst its banks and the names of nationally known politicians began to fill the air!
What we are seeing is the beginning of a Movement, augmented by social media, yes; but also animated by real, live women, as shown by the unprecedented mobilization of women shortly after Trump's unexpected win in the presidential race.
That's because social movements first change consciousness; then they change society itself.
When I was a youth, I heard whispers and hints about the 'casting couch'.
It was simply the way things were.
How many women accepted such vile treatment on their road to fame and fortune, only to find that everything that glitters ain't gold?
Today, because of the courage of such women, we are seeing the extraordinary costs of such a couch.
But this time, the men in power, are paying the price.
Tags: #MeToo, Casting Couch, Donald Trump, Female Empowerment, Feminism, Harvey Weinstein, Hollywood, Mobilization, Sexual Abuse, Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment, Social Media